Skip to main content

Full text of "Historical sketch of Potter street in Haddonfield, New Jersey"

See other formats

.5 H6 
»V 1 





Haddonfield, New Jersey 


Sarah Crawford Hillman 





Haddonfield, New Jersey 


Sarah Crawford Hillman 

Haddon Gazette Press 





Pc^osiiig through the basement of John Wanamaker's 
store, some time ago, the pottery attracted particular atten- 
tion; and the specimens, ornamental and useful, were as 
numerous and varied as the displays in general, at the 
Wanamaker establishment. 

Pausing to admire a variety of stew-pans of different 
sizes, the salesman in charge, remarked, that those useful 
articles were manufactured by a firm in Haddonfield, New 

These handy cooking vessels at once appealed to the 
party addressed, and a momentary sensation of remorse 
was experienced, because of the failure to recognize home 
products, which proved unmistakable ignorance of home 

A spirit of pride was at the same time aroused, and 
memory began to associate the present achievements with 
the historv of the past ; and in this, Potter street, naturally, 
figured most prominently. 

The manufacture of pottery was one of the earliest 
industries established in Haddonfield. The plant was 
located on the new Long-a-coming road Ellis St. being a 
continuation of the old Long-a-coming road. The land 
constituting the road was all contributed by the East side ; 
it was surveyed and laid May 23, 1798, and recorded June 
4, 1798. The street was four rods in width. 

Some years ago, efforts were made, by a few individ- 
uals, to change the name of this old street to some more 
attractive title, but the attempt was unsuccessful. 

Those who know of its significance, claim that the 
name is the distinguishing feature of the street, and though 
the pottery is no lonsfer in evidence, this should be pre- 
served as a memorial to the enterprise with which the 
street was so long and so closely associated. 

The Pottery was bulit in 1805, and owned by John 
Thompson, who purchased the property April 30th of the 

same year from Chas. French and John Brick, executors 
of the estate of EUzabeth Hinchman. On January 4th, 1816, 
John Thompson sold the place to Thomas Redman, Jr. 
The third owners of the business were Jacob and David 
Roberts, brothers, who purchased the property of Thomas 
Redman, Jr., June 5th, 1819. 

Upon the decease of Jacob Roberts, Thomas Redman 
and John Gill, his executors, jointly with David Roberts, 
sold the estate to Richard W. Snowden, who had learned 
the trade of a Potter from John Thompson, aforesaid. Mr. 
Snowden here engaged in this business for over half a cen- 
tury, viz: from 1816 till his death, October 20th, 1868. 

The Richard Snowden dw^elling was erected later, of 
material, it is said, that formerly constituted a Chair Fac- 

The bricks from the old Market House on Main street, 
that was suddenly demolished, one night in 1840, were 
purchased by Mr. Snowden and economically bestowed 
about the pottery and the dwelling. 

William H. Snowden, son of the late Richard Sr., who 
claims to be the oldest resident now living in Fladdonfteld, 
who was born in the place, enjoys to tell that he was but 
one year old, when his parents moved into their new home, 
next to the pottery. 

Mr. Snowden makes no pretensions to having been as 
precocious as many youngsters of that age at the present 
day, and, therefore, fails to be able to recall any of the 
incidents attending the event. 

Richard Snowden, Sr., died in 1868, and the pottery 
business was continued by his son, Richard, until his death, 
in 1883, when the pottery was leased by Barton Rixon, 
who had long been in the employ of Mr. Snowden. 

At this time a lathe was used to form the earthenware 
vessels, and a horse to grind the clay. 

Many recall the lathe which was a machine consisting 
of a framework, bearing an adjustable center, between 
which a cutting tool is thrust against the work, shaping or 
turning it down, usually to some circular form. 

A few years later, Charles Wingender & Bro. leased 
the factory. Under the enterprising management of these 
two brothers, w^ho learned their trade in Germany, the 
business, along the lines of improved quality and methods 

of workmanship so developed, that, in 1904, they aban- 
doned the old pottery and erected one of their own. 

The new building is situated on Lake St., near the 
western limits of the borough, and is an up-to-date, and 
commodious structure. 

They are here operating a prosperous business, and 
are never without plenty of orders in advance. They 
manufacture Plain and Ornamental Stoneware, and Earth- 
enware, and are importers of High Grade Ivory-glazed 
Mugs and Tankards. 

Of the Salt-glazed Blue Stoneware, the articles made 
include butter-pots, jars, jugs, pitchers, water-coolers, 
vases, etc. 

Of the Red Earthenware, are made pipkins, bean-pots, 
stove-pipe collars, pie-plates, hanging baskets, flower-pots, 
garden vases, etc., and. Casseroles, the stew pans, seen at 

Metallic cooking vessels being no longer used by hotels 
and restaurants, there is a great demand for casseroles. 

These are sauce-pan-shaped earthen vessels, varying in 
size, from three to eleven inches in diameter, with a simple 
glass glaze on the inside. So increasing is the demand for 
this specialty, that it is difficult to keep the trade supplied. 

This firm now manufacture flower-pots by machinery, 
which enables them to turn out hundreds more in the 
same time, than could possibly be done by the hand mould- 
ing process. 

The Haddonfield Pottery sells to all the Department 
Stores in Philadelphia and New York, and also sends orders 
to Chicago. 

The Wingenders formerly lived on the corner of Fow- 
ler Avenue, where they also conducted a store for the dis- 
play and sale of their wares : this method of advertising 
added immensely to their trade. 

Returning to Potter street and the Pottery, behold 
what changes time has wrought ! The building erected by 
Mr. Thompson in 1805, has proven itself an institution of 
wonderful possibilities. After fulfilling all the purposes 
for which it was designed, including an entire century of 
active operation, in 1905 there is beheld a complete meta- 
morphosis of the structure ; and, from the dingy, somber 
old pottery, has evolved a neat and artistic cottage. 

Instead of clays and kilns, now are seen hedges of 
evergreen, clustering vines, and masses of floral beauty, 
that impart a peculiar charm to this romantic home. 

The first tenant of this fascinating retreat was Mr. 
George Sinnickson, who, for pastime, indulged in the cul- 
ture of bees ; and, in place of the familiar steady-going old 
pottery wagon,, seen for ages, a great tooting automobile 
now sported, at random, in and out the old drive. 

One day, the auto sped off with a bound, and returned 
with a bride from Boston town. 

William H. S. Alexander, a great-grandson of the late 
Richard Snowden, Sr., next appeared on the scene, and, as 
seemed both wise and meet, this gallant young Illustrator 
brought a Haddonfield bride to Potter street. 

The dwelling that stood beside the pottery, has also 
been remodeled, and with its many improvements, is now 
one of the most comfortable homes on this street. 

Another industry may be recalled, namely, the import- 
ant business conducted by the Willits Coal and Lumber 
Co., which had its incipiency on Potter street. 

About 1830, when James Glover operated the store 
at the corner of Main and Potter Sts., he also had a little 
lumber-yard in the lot at the rear, which is now a lawn. 

James Glover's successor, also, continued the lumber 
yard, till, finally, it came into the possession of Benjamin 
Roberts, a cousin of ex-Mayor J. M. Roberts' father. Mr. 
Roberts sold out to Charles H. Shinn, who removed the 
business down Potter street. The Lumber-yard now ex- 
tended from the pottery, south, about a hundred feet, and 
all the way across to Ellis street. 

In 1849, when the eager search for gold prevailed on 
the Pacific Coast, a novel order was received by this firm — ■ 
to supply the frames for ten one-and-a— half story houses, 
to be shipped to CaUfornia. 

Joseph Stewart, the mason, then a lad, drove team 
for Samuel Albertson, the butcher, and hauled the lumber 
for the frames. 

Casper, father of the late William S. Hart, at that time, 
worked in^the Lumber-yard. 

Isaac Albertson, brother of Mary Thackara, packed 
the completed frames on a sail-boat, lying at the wharf 

along the Delaware River, at the foot of Cooper St., 

But the frames, through some misunderstanding, never 
proceeded any farther on their journey. Tliey were, at 
last, used in erecting a rov/ of houses in Camden, away 
out Federal St. toward Cooper's Creek. A group of little 
dingy structures may now be seen in that vicinit}^, consti- 
tuting what has always been know^n as "California rovv^." 

In 1852, Samuel S. Willits purchased the lumber in- 
terests of Charles H. .Shinn, and later, moved the plant 
to a large tract of land at Haddon and Euclid Avenues. 

Mr. Willits was succeeded by his son, S. A. WilUts, 
who is, at present Secretary and Manager, with an office 
on Main St., next to the bank. 

The Store that formerly stood on the west corner of 
Main and Potter Sts., had, in its history, numerous occu- 

In 1828, during John Ouincy Adams* Administration, 
the Post Office was here, and Joseph Porter was the Post- 
master. It was about this time that the mail route was 
established between Haddonfield and Camden. 

James Glover, before mentioned, next had the store. 
Mr. Glover was a brother-in-law of Mary Thackara, and 
father of Ellen Glover, her faithful niece. 

Levis Shivers succeeded Mr. Glover, and John Kay also 
conducted business here, keeping feed and general supplies 
for the Egg Harbor trade. 

On the opposite side of Potter street, at this time, w^as 
a row of open sheds, for the accommodation of overland 
craft from the Seashore. The large white-covered Egg 
Harbor wagons, drawn by two horses, and freighted with 
clams, oysters, and fish, came up the old road to Long-a- 
coming, now named Berlin, where they halted and fed. 
Then, they came by way of Cross Keys, the present Gibbs- 
boro, and on to Haddonfield, which was their next and 
final stopping place, to rest and feed, before going on to 
Camden and Philadelphia with their cargo of sea-food. 
While the teams found shelter under the Potter street 
sheds, their drivers, no doubt, refreshed themselves at the 
Old Tavern House. 

After supplying the trade in the village with such 


stock as they carried, these toilers pursued their journey 
along the King's Highway, and down the "Ferry Road,'' 
Through sand or mud, to the Delaware. 

Returning, Potter street was again their harbor, where, 
after loading up with horse feed, pork, flour, and, un- 
doubtedly, a supply of whisky, for all the stores then 
dealt in this commodity, they travelled back again to the 
shore, only to re-load, and repeat the same long, monot- 
onous round ; they usually made two or three trips a week. 
Some went by the way of Ellis street. 

But the above were not the only patrons of the well- 
known Potter St. sheds. 

The Glass-house wagons from Waterford, Winslow, 
and other points, drawm by six or eight mules, with a 
bell suspended from each side of the head, for protection 
in the darkness, also mingled with the Egg Harbor visit- 
ants, and the Charcoal teams of Long-a-coming and vicin- 
ity, as well as the Box Factory vehicles of Clementon. 

These various conveyances travelled, not in processions 
or trains, but, at various intervals, through the day, and 
through the night, one, two, or more, coming or going, 
could be seen or heard, slowly wending their lonely way 
alono- the old pottery road to their destination. 

In the 50's, however, conditions changed ; turnpikes 
and railroads came to the rescue, and in the rapid march 
of progress and improvement, the former old methods of 
transportation so speedily passed out of existence, that it 
soon came to be a curiosity to see one of the "old-timers'*' 
on the road 

The old Store on the corner, also, caught the spirit; 
it joined in the march, and, for the last time, experienced 
a change, not only in occupancy, but of ownership. 

Aaron C. Clement, son of John Clement, Sr., now 
came into possession of this property, and, with the ad- 
vent of the new owner and proprietor, everything about 
the establishment was revolutionized. A first-class Dry 
Goods and Grocery Store was founded, and, under the 
skillful management of this bright, energetic, and capable 
man, an extensive business was developed. For many 
years, this was the leading store in Haddonfield ; its repu- 
tation drew patronage from far and wide, and, regardless 

of distance, people counted it a privilege to do their trad- 
ing at Aaron Clement's store. 

After Mr. Clement lost his health, and retired from 
business, the old store, for awhile, stood tenantlcss, and 
about twenty-five years ago, was torn down, and the 
lumber untilized in building some small houses at the 
foot of Ellis street. 

Among the early residents of Potter street, no one was 
probaly better knovv^n, than James G. Webster; he was a 
carriage builder, and carried on the business at the southern 
part of the street, where his home and wheelwright shop 
were located. 

Aside from being a skilled mechanic, Mr. Webster 
was an ardent lover of music, and was the fortunate pos- 
sessor of an admirable tenor voice. He led the singing 
in the choir of the old Baptist Church, that then occupied 
the site of the present Mortuary Chapel. This energetic 
gentlemen, also conducted, almost without charge, a choral 
class, during the evenings of the week, by means of which, 
the choir was kept supplied with trained singers. 

Edward Webster, son of the above, is a teller in the 
Old National State Bank of Camden, where he has been 
employed since a boy. Mr. Webster received his appoint- 
ment through the late John Gill, Sr., the long-honored 
President of this Bank. Edward Webster 2d, is a clerk 
in the same institution with his father. 

The house built and owned by Edward Webster, was 
next to his father's, and partly constructed of a portion 
of the old wheelwright shop, moved over from the Ellis 
street side of the lot. 

A few years ago, this property was purchased by Mrs. 
Caroline Haines. It was remodeled and enlarged, and is 
now the "Anna Scull Memorial Rest Cottage." 

An equally prominent resident of Potter street, was 
the late William C. Githens. His home and cabinet shop, 
on the east side of Potter street, near Main, are among 
the few old landmarks whose original forms have been 
preserved. Mr. Githens was an Undertaker, and learned 
his trade of William Hugg, whose cabinet shop stood on 
the south side of the store lot. 

Mr. Githens was a superior mechanic, and manufac- 
tured most of his funeral supplies at home. Like his friend 


James Webster, he also enjoyed music, and, to relieve the 
tedium of his solemn vocation, often resorted to his fiddle. 

Mr. Githens, at one time, played the violincello in the 
Baptist Church choir. During- Air. Webster's leadership 
of the choir, by a vote of a church meeting, consent had 
been gained to use the cello, which was a step in advance, 
and brought about a controversy among the members. 
Some left the church, but the "obnoxious thing" continued 
to be used. It followed that other musical instruments 
were added ; beside an organ and Billy Githens' cello, 
John Clement played the violin, and Benjamin Thackara, 
the flute. 

Charles W., son of William Githens, continued the 
business of his father, and with his family, now occupies 
the old homestead. Mr. Githens excels in the art of inlaid 
work. A table recently completed, has in the center, a 
desip-n, charmingly wrought with ebony, holly, vermillion, 
red wood, and other ornamental varieties. He is also an 
admirer of fine paintings, of which he owns a large and 
valuable collection. 

Mr. Githens inherits a love of music, and v/hile he 
plays no instrument, seldom misses the Concerts of the 
Philadelphia Orchestra. He still has his father's eventful 
old cello, which claims a most important place in the Pot- 
ter street home. 

Passing down Potter street, next to Aaron Clement's, 
is the remodeled house of Ezra Bell. This house formerly 
belonged to John Plaines, and was occupied by Joseph 
Kain and his familv. Mr. Kain was a wheelwright and 
worked for James Webster. Two of his daug^hters, Sarah 
and Elizabeth were dress-makers and understood their art. 

Billv Githens now used the cabinet shop vacated by 
William Hu-^-^ and, later on, built his own on the opposite 
side of the street. About this time, Mr. Githens became 
a widower ; and never believing it wise for man to be 
alone, it was perfectly natural and commendable as well, 
that he should, at the proper time, take another mate. Mr. 
Githens' first choice was the niece of Mrs. Hugg, the wife 
of the man with whom he learned his trade. In his second 
matrimonial venture, this wise and far-seeing man had 
no idea of rushing into ills of which he knew not, and, 
therefore, most judiciously selected, for his new partner, 


his well-known and ever valued neighbor and friend, Sarah 

Mrs. Githens the second, was the estimable mother 
of Charles \V., and survived her husband many years. 

Elizabeth Kain, then a p-irl in her teens, was a soprano 
in that famous Baptist choir; many years later, she became 
the second wife of James Webster, in whose choral class 
she had received her first lesson in singing-. Mrs. Webster, 
nov/ past the four-score mark, has long been a widow ; her 
loudness for music, however, has lost none of its intensity, 
nor has the mem.ory of those choir rehearsals, held at the 
home of JJilly Githens, ever ceased to be, to her, a source 
of supreme pleasure. 

In the early part of the nineteenth century, Silas AVil- 
lis built a little house on Potter street, below the pottery. 
This Avas a primitive little affair, and no less conspicuous 
for its diminutive size, than for the limited number of its 
apartments. Silas Willis' wife, Elizabeth, was a sister of 
Joseph Kain, and the present Elizabeth Webster is her 

The late Benjamin B. Willis was a son of the above 
Silas Willis, and, in 1813, was born in this little Potter 
street house, a picture of which, in after years, was amon:^ 
Mr. Willis' choicest possessions. 

Bowman Middleton and Bennie Willis both worked 
in the cabinet shop of Billy Githens, whose wife, Sarah 
Kain, was Bennie's cousin. 

Bowman Middleton completed his trade, and, for many 
years, was one of Camden's most popular undertakers. 
Bennie Willis, however, was unable, physically, to finish his 
trade, and, therefore, left the shop and engaged in teach- 
ing. He had a school on Main street, where Phebe Cox 
afterward taught. 

About 1840, Mr. Willis obtained a position in the Pub- 
lishino- House of J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia. He 
afterward became a member of the firm, with which, for 
more than a quarter of a century, he was actively asso- 

It was an established custom with this firm, that when 
a member had acquired a certain amount of money, he 
should withdraw. B. B. Willis, therefore, went out in 1805, 


ctlthough he never actually severed his entire connection 
with the Lippincott store. 

At this time, Mr. Willis purchased the Sharpless prop- 
erty on West Main street, and returned, with his family, 
to the village of his birth. During the pastorate of the 
Rev. R. F. Young, ''Bro. Bennie" rendered valuable sup- 
port to the Haddonfield Baptist Church, of which he v/as 
a devoted member. From his Kain ancestry, Mr. Willis 
inherited the talent for music that characterized the entire 
family; he was a beautiful singer, often playing his own 
accompaniments, and his effective rendering of the old 
church hymns, was a source of infinite pleasure to all who 
heard him. 

In 1838, Reuben Roberts moved from Philadelphia to 
Potter street, into the house vacated by Joseph Kain. This 
house belonged to Rachel, w4fe of Reuben Roberts, to 
whom it had been left by John Haines, her brother. Mr. 
Roberts was a mason, and an excellent mechanic ; he had 
the honor of putting the first rough-cast, or stucco on the 
Old Tavern. 

Keturah, one of his daughters, was a teacher, and for 
awhile, conducted a little school at her home on Potter 
street. Josiah Evans' children were among the pupils. Miss 
Roberts now makes her home with John Bell, a nephe\v. 

In 1857, Samuel Thackara returned to Potter street, 
with a new partner, his third matrimonial venture, and 
again occupied the home next to the Reuben Roberts house, 
which, some years before, he had purchased of Franklin 
Eggman, the tailor. 

The maiden name of Mr. Thackara's first wi^e was Pea- 
cock ; she was the mother of his two children, one of v/hom 
was Benjamin, of the firm of Thackara & Buck, dealers in 
Gas Fixtures, on Chestnut St., Philadelphia. 

Mr. Thackara was not a stranger in Haddonfield ; on 
the contrary, he was one of the most interesting inhabi- 
tants,, for he had served in the war of 1812, and, being 
a blacksmith, while in the army, followed his useful calling. 

At one time, Samuel Thackara carried on his busi- 
ness in Haddonfield, and his shop stood on the corner of 
Main and Grove sts., now occupied by the Methodist 
Church. Later, Mr. Thackara engaged in business in Phil- 


adelphia, and, with his second wife, nee Miss Burrough, 
boarded in the home of Mrs. Ann Glover. 

Again becoming a widower, Mr. Thackara renewed the 
acquaintance of Mary Albertson, Mrs. Glover's sister, of 

Casually, Mr. Thackara engaged Mary to make some 
additions to his wardrobe, and this kind friend, ever indus- 
trious and practical as well, quite enjoyed the novelty. 
Mary had advanced toward middle age, and not being 
easily suited, had not yet found a suitor; this was a fact 
to which her friends had become reconciled, when, sud- 
denly, and without warning, the village was stirred to its 
very center, and the usually peaceful Potter street expe- 
rienced a desperate upheaval, by the entirely unexpected, 
and apparently incredible announcement, that Mary Al- 
bertson was going to marry ''Old Sammy Thackara." 

The. little wardrobe episode had, in some mysterious, 
and unaccountable way, escaped the knowledge of even 
the most vigilant ; even the reported removal of the tenants 
of Mr. Thackara's house had attracted but slight notice, but 
when the owner himself frequently appeared about the 
place all doubts were removed regarding the step that Mary 
A-lbertson was about to take. 

For a time, the usual routine of business was forgotten, 
and a delegation repaired to the cabinet shop of Billv 
Githens to discuss the situation. Work on a half-finished 
casket, v/as, temporarily suspended, and Billy, who was 
a man of a few Avords, conscientious, and of undoubted 
authority on matrimonial subjects, was heard to declare, 
and in the presence of reliable witnesses, that, in his opin- 
ion, the couple would make a good match. 

It was, therefore, fifty-two years ago, that Samuel 
Thackara, husband of the surviving Mary, now in the one- 
hundredth-vear of her age, become for the second time a 
worthy resident of Potter street. 

A few improvements to the house were needed ; there 
was one thing, Marv said, she had always been used to, and 
could not think of doing without, and that Avas a back stair- 
way. This indulgence was not only immediately granted, 
but a spacious new kitchen also, and, to Mary's unspeakable 
deliofht, a room over it, containing four windows, in the 


There were but few houses on Potter street in those 
days. On the west side, were first, the corner store and 
WilHam Hugg's cabinet shop ; the Reuben Roberts and 
Thackara houses ; the Snowden dwelHng and the Pottery ; 
the lumber-yard office and Silas Willis house. James G. 
Webster's house, which remains' unaltered, came next, and 
at its rear, was his wheelwright shop. 

William Tomlinson owned the blacksmith shop at the 
point where Potter and Ellis streets meet, and with his 
family, occupied one of the little houses near his business. 
Later he abandoned his trade and built a new house on the 
opposite side of the street. 

At the corner of Main and Potter streets, on the east 
side, was the home of the Morrises, the maternal grand- 
parents of Mayor Roberts. 

Mary, daughter of Richard Snowden, Sr., once taught 
a little school in this house. 

The sheds before mentioned occupied the next space, 
and farther on was Billy Githens' house, with the cabinet 
shop beside it. John Hains' sisters owned the next small 
dwelling: Clement's pasture field followed, and up the road 
opposite the pottery, was the home of Isabella PI. Crawford. 
A long stretch of farm land succeeded, and the little rough- 
cast house, with its little frame store addition, was now 

In 1843, Jacob H. Fowler moved from his farm, on the 
Milford road, near "Flillman," into this house, built by 
Joseph Hillman, and his daughters, Rebecca and Eliza, at- 
tended the store. All the youngsters in the village resorted 
thither for their cakes and candy. The window in the front 
was decorated with well-filled jars of tempting sweets, 
and the entrance, as all the trade well knew, was by a door 
on the north side. 

Christmastide was a busy time here, for Air. Fowler 
kept a full stock of candies and toys, and all sorts of holiday 
treats for the girls and boys. 

Next to Mr. Fowler's was a small house, built by Jo- 
siah Parker; this he sold to Miss Haines, a maiden lady, 
w^ho lived there the remainder of her life. This property 
was afterward owned by a sister of William Tomlinson. 
Zebulon Tompkins, father of Harry Tompkins, the con- 
tractor, also of Mrs. Edward Webster, for many years oc- 


cupicd this house. J\Ir. Tompkins was among the first from 
Haddonfield to enlist in the War of the Rebellion, in which 
he faithfully served during the four years of its continuance. 
Ke v;as enrolled in Company E, 6th Regiment, N. J. Vols. 
The present owner of the above is Willam H. Harrison, the 
assessor, by whom the house has been enlarged, and almost 
entirely rebuilt. 

William Tomlinson's ncAV house v/as next, built when 
he resigned the blacksmith shop, and where he now engaged 
in the butcher business, and had an abattoir, or slaughter 
house on the Dremises. An attraction here, for a time, 
was a wounded eagle : the bird had been shot on Hooten's 
Mount, and one wing broken. Later it was brought as a curi- 
osity to Mr. Tomlinson's and protected in his crib house. 
The disabled member healed, however, and had the captive 
been released, it would, undoubtedly, have flown away ro 
its native haunts. 

Below Mr. Tomlinson's were two or three small ten- 
ements, owned by Charles Lippincott, of Main street, and 
these completed the east side. , 

Some time in the 50's Col. Jesse Peyton, 3. Kentucky 
gentleman, residing on Main street, in the dwelling recent- 
ly demolished to widen Colonial avenue, and make room 
for the charming new house of Charles H. Hillman, his 
son-in-law, manifested a spirit of progress and enterprise 
almost beyond comprehension, when he erected the public 
building on Potter street, next to the present Haddon House 
and in honor of his friend, Dr. Charles H. Hendry, named it 
"Hendry Plall." 

Col. Peyton, ever of an esthetic inclination, wished to 
provide a suitable place for lectures, musicales, etc., and 
thus afford the people of Pladdonfield an opportunity for 
the enjoyment of a high order of entertainment. 

The buiding was made possible by the ingenious com- 
bination of portions of two unused barns in the_ vicinity : 
one of these was contributed by Charles H. Shinn, who, 
in 1844, erected on the corner of Main and Grove streets, 
the dwelling now enlarged and owned by W. H. Snowden. 
Mr. Shinn's barn, therefore, was moved across Main 
street to aid in the enterprise. 

Hendry Hall was a structure of somewhat unique de- 
sign — extremely long and narrow, and weather boarded 


vertically, but admirably adapted to the purpose for which 
it was intended. 

For a while the conception promised to succeed. A 
lecture course was highly appreciated, and various other 
attractions followed. 

On one occasion, the late Carl Sentz, a warm personal 
friend of the Col. gave a concert, contributing his services, 
and the proceeds of the evening were appropriated by Col. 
Peyton to the scheme of lighting the streets of the village. 
Second-hand lamp posts were obtained, because they cost 
the less ; a lamp lighter was employed to light the kerosene 
lamps in the evening, and, at dawn, again go around and 
extinguish them. 

The village was small, with a limited number of streets 
and the lamps were few and far between, like the rays 
that emanated form them, w^hich, though hardly more than 
of the will-o-the-wisp conceit, Haddonfield enjoyed the 
dignity of ov/ning street lamps ; and, certainly, travelling 
at night was far less difficult and dangerous. 

But, regardless of the noble efforts of Col. Peyton, the 
success of Hendry Hall was of short duration. After a 
few Sunday School entertainments and a fair for the beneiit 
of sick and wounded soldiers, only an occasional dance or 
supper served to rescue the enterprise from total oblivion. 
The building came to be used for different purposes. 

A private school for girls, conducted by Mr. Hutchin- 
son, was once attempted here, and though, for a tim^e, pat- 
ronized by the best families, it too, passed out of existence. 

The property finally changed owners, and was con- 
verted into a dwelling. In remodelling the structure, there 
seemed an actual dissection of the affair, and, as trophies, 
many of the parts found niches in most unlikely situations. 

The front of the Hall was moved around on Main street 
and made to constitute a part of a dwelling, afterward occu- 
pied by Dr. Bowman Shivers ; while the blinds or shutters 
were sect red by Isaac Braddock to embellish the front 
window^s of his residence at the corner of Main street and 
Haddon avenue. 

Enlarged and beautified, one now beholds, in the place 
of the Hendry Hall, the spacious and comfortable dwelling 
of Samuel L. A. Clement, the oldest son of the iaro Aaron 


C, who happily, received the lion's share of this mutilated 
monument of Col. Peyton's pride. 

Samuel C. A. Clement married Anna, daughter of the 
late Capt. Wm. H. and Louisa G. Shinn. 

Benjamin Eggman, for many years a trusted clerk 
in the store of A. C. Clement, lived on the Avest corner of 
what is now Fowler avenue; after leaving Mr. Clement 
he here started the grocery business for himself. in w^hicli 
he was very successful. The home of Bennie Eggman 
was the former lumber-yard office, enlarged a-xf remodeled. 
While the office of Samuel Willits. however, the 
"Friends' Library" was, for a time, located there, and Henry 
Wible v/as the Librarian. When the Lumber-yard was 
removed, the Library, w^hich had seemed to have no con- 
tinuing city, was moved with it, and continued its itineracy 
for many years afterw^ard, till, at last, it anchored at the 
present site on Main street. 

Soon after the close of the Civil War, David Southard, 
built a large house on the corner of the drive opposite 
Bennie Eggman's. Mr. Southard had served the war 
through, and spent eighteen months in Andersonville 
Prison. Fie was by trade a blacksmith, and, wdiile a pris- 
oner, worked at the forge. For this, he received some 
compensation, that enabled him to procure something bet- 
ter than the ordinary prison fare, which he often shared 
with his comrades. 

Mr. Southard owned the Blacksmith shop at the foot 
of Potter street, v/hich, later, he sold to Samuel K. Mat- 
lack; his house, he exchanged for one belonging to Elwood 
Fowler in Ellisburg, Avhere he aftervv^ard removed, 

Elwood Fowler, father of Benjamin F. Fowler, then 
a lad in Alfred W. Clement's store, and now an enterpris- 
ing merchant of Haddonfield, at this time became a resi- 
dent of Potter street ; here Mr. Fowler erected a number 
of houses and the hitherto little driveway, leading to Ellis 
street, now becam^e known as Fowder Avenue. 

Some time in the 70's, George D. Stuart abandoned 
farm life, and built a hom.e on Potter street, next to the 
pottery. Later, he purchased the Jacob P. Fowler place 
opposite, built in i860, and for many years, was extensively 
engaged as a dealer in fine horses. Deacon Stuart, as he 
was generally known, passed away two years ago ; the 


beautiful home is occupied by his surviving wife and a 

Jacob P. Fowler, the former owner of this home, and 
a son of the Jacob H. Fowler who once kept the little 
store, was a ''Justice of the Peace," but, so orderly and 
well-reguiated v/ere the residents of Potter, street, that 
"Squire Fowler" never had occasion to exercise his author- 
ity. Mr. Fowler departed this life several years ago, leav- 
ing a fourth wife, who still survives him. 

Among those who selected Potter street as a place of 
retirement, was Miss Isabella H. Crawford. Her house 
was constructed, more than half a century ago, of material 
from a part of the house on Main St., belonging to John 
Clement, Sr., for whom she was, for twenty years, manag- 
ing housekeeper. ]\Ir. Clement willed the above to her 
for life. 

IMiss Crawford, noted for her erect and dignified ap- 
pearance, was ever genial, courteous, hospitable, and a 
general favorite among those accustomed to visit at the 
home of John Clement, where she so long and so ably 

Dr. Theodore S. Williams moved from Germantown 
to Potter street, about 1870; he purchased the William 
Tomlinson house, which he occupied many years before 
removing to the Horter property on INIain Street, opposite 
Haddon Avenue. 

Dr. Williams was a graduate of Bowdoin College, 
Mass., and the first Homeopathic Physician to practice 
in Germantown ; he received the honorary degree of doctor 
of homeopathic medicine, from the old Homeopathic Med- 
ical College of Pennslyvania in 1850. 

Dr. Williams was, during his life, one of the 'most 
distinguished practitioners in Philadelphia. 

The present Dr. Franklin Eyre Williams is a son of 
the late Theo. S. Williams, and Eliza Eyre, his wife, and 
v/as born in Germantow^n. He was educated in the Phil- 
adelphia public schools, the Friends' Acadeni}^ in Haddon- 
iield, and the University of Pennsylvania. In the latter, 
he graduated in both the academic and medical depart- 
ments. I^r. Williams also graduated from the Hahne- 
mann Medical College of Philadelphia, and since that time, 
has been engaged in the practice of medicine now in Had- 


donfield, as a specialist in internal medicaJon and chronic 

While a boy in his teens, Dr. Williams was prepared 
for the University of Pennsylvania by the late John Boadle, 
of the Haddonfield Friends' School. 

Samuel Paris and Dorothy Crispin Paris, his wife, 
moved from Philadelphia to Potter street about twenty- 
five years ago, into the house formerly owned by Capt. 
Tatem, opposite Clement's field. Mr. Paris was the son 
of Gabriel Paris, who was of Huguenot descent, and born 
of noble family in Paris, France. Samuel Paris v/as a man 
of intellect and literary ability; he was particularly noted 
for his knowledge of Shakespeare and the Bible. With 
his long wdiite hair and beard, Mr. Paris was of real patri- 
archal appearance, insomuch that many w^ere inclined to 
honor him with the title of "grandfather." 

Mrs. Jessie C. P. Williams, wife of Dr. F. E. Williams, 
is a grand-daughter of Mr. Paris. 

When his health became impaired and Rheumatic Gout 
quite crippled him, Mr. Paris' poetic nature came to the 
rescue, and he amused himself writing verse. With him 
originated the unique idea of writing advertisements in the 
form of poetry. Mr. Paris was for many years identified 
vnth the famous "Tower Hall," of Philadelphia, as were 
also other members of his family. 

In the early 70's, William H. Fowler, grandson of 
Jacob H. Fowler, and a veteran of the Civil War, built the 
house on Potter street, next to Abel Hiilman's, where, for 
a few years, he lived. This house has had numerous ten- 
ants, among whom was Charles W. Kimball, also a veteran 
of the War, and a Scientist. Mr. and Mrs. Kimball were 
both members of the Natural Science Club, and, for eight- 
een years, the former was its valued President. A few years 
ago, the family moved to the Pacific Coast, and are now 
living at Long Beach, in Southern California. 

The late Robert F. Young, for twenty-two years the 
vv^orthy and faithful pastor of the Haddonfield Baptist church 
previous to the purchase of the parsonage, lived on Potter 
street, in the Haines house, next to Mr. Githens' shop. It 
was largely due to the indefatigable efforts of R. F. Young, 
that Local Option was gained for Haddonfield . 

In 1888, Abel Hillman, son of the late Samuel and 


Keziah F. Hillman, a retired farmer, purchased the Stuart 
property, adjoining the Snowden estate. Mr. HiUman be- 
. came prominently identified with the public aftairs of the 
Borough. His honesty appealed to the minds of the citi- 
zens, and he was elected six timics a member of the Bor- 
ough Council, and served six years as Treasurer of the 
Borough. Mr. Hillman was also Supervisor of streets. 
He died of paralysis of the throat in 1899, aged sixty-six 
years. A surviving widow and daughter occupy the home- 

Next door to Aunt Mary Thackara's, formerly lived 
her sister, Eleanor Rulon, and her widow^ed daughter, Eliza 
R. Boggs, who was the mother of William R. Boggs, 
Cashier of the Haddonfield National Bank. At this time, 
rosy-cheeked little Willie was just learning to make the 
figures, that he has ever since been using. 

William S. Capern, now the Master Builder of Had- 
donfield, for a few years lived in one of Elwood Fowler's 
cottages, below Fowder Avenue. After being an employee 
of Mr. Albright for three years, Mr. Capern decided to 
branch out for himself ; his first contract v/as to tear down 
the old store of Aaron Clement, and appropriate the lumber 
elsewhere. This accomplished, other orders followed, and 
Mr. Capern was in constant demand, and has been ever 
since, as results prove. 

Keziah French Hillman, widow of Samuel Hillman, 
and a descendant of the French Family, wdiose genealogy 
has recently been completed, with her youngest daughter, 
for several year? occupied the Isabella Crawford house, 
until the home and school building, now the Athenaeum, 
were erected on Chestnut street. 

Miss Rebecca Snowden, the faithful companion of her 
brother, Richard, Jr., was closely identified with Potter 
street, and all its associations. Miss Snowden was an ex- 
cellent neighbor, a valued friend, and a most devoted mem- 
ber of the Episcopal Church. 

Miss Frances Tomlinson, also, the only daughter oi 
William Tomlinson, passed the earlier portion of her life 
on Potter street. She was, for many years, a member of 
the Methodist church choir, and, later, became the wife 
of R. Elmer Clement. 

James L. Pennypacker lived for several years on Pot- 


ter street, opposite the Thackara home, before removing 
to the late Dr. Hendry house on Main street. Mr. Penny- 
packer is a graduate of Harvard College, and he and Mrs. 
Pennypacker are engaged in literary pursuits. They are 
active members of the Natural Science Club, and Mr. Pen- 
nypacker is President of the Delaware Valley Naturalists' 

Samuel Dunbarr was one of the first to occupy the 
dvv^elling made of the Hendry Hall. 

Edv/in Graham, father of j\Irs. H. S. Scovel, also lived 
there, and, the final tenant, before Samuel Clement took 
possession, was William Thompson, who removed to Chest- 
nut street. Walter C. Rulon formerly lived on Potter St., 
and Emma, his daughter, delights in the fact that she was 
born there. 

The late William Shreve, whose family purchased the 
old home of R. Elmer Clement's father, on Ellis St., for 
many years resided in one of the Fowler houses on Potter 

Silas Willis who built the little house below the pot- 
tery, took his second wife to reside on Tanner street ; frorr 
here, ''Uncle Silas" removed to the Joseph Bates house 
on Ellis street, where he died. 

Many others might be named, who, at one time or 
another, sojourned for awhile on Potter street, but the 
object of the present sketch has been, more particularly, 
to recall some of the earliest residents and their various 

Of late years. Potter street has expanded, and come 
to assume a modern aspect. Branching out from this old 
highway from the Delaware to the Sea, are now observed 
Fowler Avenue, Springfield Terrace, Belmont Drive, etc., 
and others are in contemplation. 

Most of the old dwellings have been rebuilt or re- 
modelled, and many beautiful new ones added. 

The Morris home on the north-east corner has devel- 
oped into the large and commodious Haddon House. The 
estate of the Haines sisters has also been modernized, 
and is now occupied by Merritt Pharo, wdiose wife is a 
granddaughter of the late Reuben Roberts. 

Isabella Crawford's old home, once so rural, has, like 
the others, undergone various changes, and is now sur- 


rounded by new structures. On the south side, is the hand- 
some residence of Mrs. W. S. Dunphey, daughter of the 
late George D. Stuart. 

Among the improvements, however, nothing is more 
striking than the complete transformation of the little 
abode below the pottery, built nearly a century ago. In 
its time, this house has known many tenants. Joseph Kain 
once occupied it, temporarily, before moving next to James 

Joseph Plum once lived there ; this was the father of 
John, the well-known proprietor of the American House, 
as the Old Tavern was then called, and who Vv^as one of 
those put out of business, when Local Option went into 
effect in Haddonfield. 

In the 6o's, Reuben Pond, whose wife Avas a sister of 
Samuel Reeves, of Rowandtown, also called Glenwood, 
and, at present, Westmont, purchased this property, and 
Elwood Fowler enlarged and rebuilt the house. 

Mr. and Mrs. Pond remained here till the end of their 
days. Two years ago, the surviving children sold the prop- 
erty to George Peacock, who at once proceeded to redeem 
the neglected fabric from its utter desolation ; on the ruins 
of the past, therefore, has arisen a cottage, that for neat- 
ness and beauty, claims more than a mere passing notice. 
The two little red houses next to Mr. Web'ster's, built, 
nobody knows how long ago, are still holding their own. 
Next to these, is a little new house made of an old barn, 
moved over from Ellis srteet. 

Fitted in between this and the final Matlack house, is 
still another habitation, made of J^>Iark Bareford's old wheel- 
wright shop, transferred from Ellis street, and made to face 
in the opposite direction. 

The former indispensable Blacksmith shop with its 
long list of owmers, has disappeared from view, and, on the 
vacant point, not even a horse-shoe has been left to perpet- 
uate the memory of this useful old establishment. 

Amid the changing scenes of the southern end of Pot- 
ter street, the little ''red store" so dear to the former juve- 
nile portion of the community, has admirably acquitted it- 
self. Built more than a century ago, by Joshua Peacock, 
utilized, for a quarter of that time, by the Fowlers, as a 
successful place of business, this same structure now dem- 


onstrates the dignity of useful occupation, by its latest 
elevation, v/hereby, it has so been transformed, and beauti- 
fied, as, at present, to constitute the bright and attractive 
parlor of Mr. Jo3^ce's remodelled home. 

AVhen, and by whom the Joyce house was built seems 
somewhat a matter of conjecture. The oldest residents of 
Haddonfield, vv^hen questioned, regarding it, will halt, hesi- 
tate, and, finally admit that this house has been there as 
long as they can remember, and thus the problem seems 
impossible of solution. 

A'Vhat is now Potter street, was formerly a private 
road, and Avas only opened to the public in 1798, and called 
the ''New Long-a-coming Road." 

John Kay, late of Waterford, Gloucester Co., owned 
much land on the East side of this road, toward the Mill 
Pond. In a Deed Book in the Court House at Woodbury, 
is the following record of a codicil to the Will of John 
Kay, dated May 27, 1785 : — ''devised all his lands in Newton 
Township, except ten acres, w^hich he had devised (to his 
daughters) to his wife, Rebecca, who, by her AVill, dated 
January 27, 1798, devised part to her daughter Ann Kay, 
who married Isaac Cathrall." 

It is further stated, "that on March 21, 1801, Dr. Isaac 
Cathrall, of Philadelphia, and Ann, his wife, of the one 
part, conveyed four acres, one rood, and thirtv-five perches 
of land on Potter street (Long-coming-road) to Joseph 
Hillman. yeoman, of Haddonfield, Gloucester Co., of the 
other part, for the" sum of $384., paid by the said Joseph 
Hillman." The above was recorded June 15, 1801. This 
is the estate on Potter street, on the corner of Springfield 
Terrace, novx^ owned by Edwin L. Joyce, As no mention 
is made of a dwelling in the above transaction, it seems 
highly probable that the that the little brick house pur- 
chased by Joshua Peacock, was built by Joseph Hillman. 

No further record can be found until the above Joshua, 
great-grandfather of Samuel N. Peacock, associated with 
B. F. Fowler, bought this property, and, to the brick house, 
built the frame addition, which was the store before men- 
tioned. When Joshua Peacock bought this place, cannot 
be ascertained, but, as he was born in 1758, and was about 
forty years old, w^hen Joseph Hillman became owner of the 
above, it seems likely that he was the succeeding owner. 


Susanna, Joshua's daughter, kept house for him while 
he lived here. She married Josiah Parker, who built the 
house next door, now owned by William H. Harrison. 
Susanna died in 1837, aged 46 years. After the decease of 
his daughter, Joshua Peacock sold his property to Jacob 
H. Fowler, and w^ent to live with his son, Joseph Peacock, 
near the present Freeman Station, where George N. Pea- 
cock, Joseph's son, now resides. Joshua Peacock died in 
1848, aged 90 years. 

In 1843; Jacob H. Fowler, and his famil}^ moved from 
his farm on the Milford road, into the house on Potter 
street, and the daughters conducted the store, before de- 
scribed, until the death of their father in i8!56. 

George Lair next purchased the property, and about 
1880, sold the same to Mr. Hayes, a retired Coal dealer of 

Mrs. Smith of Center street, the daughter of Mr. Hayes, 
next occupied the house. A few years ago, the property 
was sold to Edwin L. Joyce, by whom the house has been 
enlarged. An additional story has been added to the brick 
part of the building, and the little frame store, elevated 10 
the dignity of its mate ; so numerous have been the im- 
provements, made to this old landmark, that mau}^ almost 
fail to recognize the place. 

The Dr. AVilliams house is now owned by l^.Ir. Eng- 
land, and the tenements beyond, are owned by l^^Ir. George 

This street, laid in 1798, has developed into an attract- 
ive avenue; it is broad, well-shaded, clean, and, most de- 
sirable of all, charmingly quiet. The southern section has 
recently been improved by grading and curbing, and all 
the sidevv^alks have been paved. Electricity, gas, water, 
sewerage, and the telephone, have also been added, so that 
all city advantages are now at the disposal of the resi- 
dents of Potter street. 

The descendants of the old stock are found mostly at 
the upper part of the avenue, and are a remarkably enter- 
prising and contented people. Like the ivy, they closely 
twine and tightly cling to the fond recollections of the past, 
and delight in the unfading memories so closely associated 
with the beloved old Historic Potter street.